Health, las vegas, RAI, ThyCa, Thyroid Cancer, Thyroids, Uncategorized

Mic Check : One, Two — What thyroid?

I realize, I’m not so fantastic at this whole blog thing. I get a vibe going and then I fall off. Which isn’t right. Not only does this blog exist to represent a plethora of thyroid cancer knowledge and awareness, it also touches on my experience to all my fellow survivors and recently diagnosed. My intentions are always to engage, inspire, make you laugh, create a blanket of comfort, and to let you know – You are going to be just fine.

This week, I am currently undergoing my yearly cancer screening. This involves thyrogen shots, blood work, a neck ultrasound, a tiny dose of RAI, and of course a full body scan this Friday. I will make sure to write about the whole process. I do have a few really great subjects to touch on next week pertaining to the cost of having a “good kind of cancer” as well as all the pills that have come into my life since being diagnosed.

Stay tuned, Darlings – Keep fighting the good fight!

via Mic Check : One, Two — What thyroid?

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Health, ThyCa, Thyroid Cancer, Thyroids, Uncategorized

On Pins and Needles, with an Extra Side of Needles …

Why do I feel like every time I post, I need to start it off with “WOW – It’s been a while.” Sorry about that. Life gets busy and wild and I’m the worst at carving out time for myself these days. Unless it involves travel. Traveling has been a huge outlet for me, helping to reduce stress and explore, because let’s face it, life’s short! Anyways, hello there, welcome back! To you, to me. Let’s talk life without a thyroid once again.

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If there’s one thing I’ve come accustom to, it’s you take what you can get. Whether it’s an ultrasound on a Saturday or surgery on Christmas Eve. Avoid excuses, face reality, and move along as quickly and calmly as possible. You’ll never be ready for bad news so here’s vibing for the best – always. *
——–Starting last Saturday, this week marks the start of my yearly examinations since diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2014. Considering my initial diagnosis, I have yet to be in remission. Every three months I have labs pulled. Every six months I check in with the docs for them to tell me pretty much nothing except we’ll keep monitering you. Thanks. And every year I have a plethora of testing, more blood work, and scans done.

Now, while I’m about pro level at this microscopic game of thyroid cancer, I still get quite uneasy when I have looming appointments like these approaching. Especially the yearly follow up. These are big time, folks. And I have yet to receive good news, just once. Let me tell you, I f*cking NEED THIS. A break. To regroup and refocus.

April 22 ( Earth Day! ), the last thing I would ever ask for is to unfold out of slumber and head to Desert Radiology for a neck ultrasound. Playing with plants and spending the day outside, enjoying our blue planet sounded more like my cup of tea. But alas, like I mentioned in the *above, sometimes you just have to dive in and be done with it.
Away I went.

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Random Side Thought: When fellow patrons in the waiting room hear you called down the ultrasound hallway, I wonder the percentage of people listening assume I must be pregnant. AND, if and when that day ever comes, will I be traumatized by ultrasounds? I mean, seriously. I’ve had about a dozen of them and none came out the way we wanted. 

Back the the update.

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At this point I know exactly what cancer looks like under ultrasonic frequency. Your lymph nodes appear circular and solid black, traced with a small outline. When cancer shows it’s ugly presence, the best way to describe – Tiny little static within that solid black circle. When mapping for my second surgery, one of the ultra sound techs and the administering doctor, stabbing needles into my neck, showed me the art of death. Now I’m terrified of it. So rather than stare at the screen this time, I opted to shut my eyes and keep breathing. I didn’t as questions like I normally do. I’ve pretty much asked them all. Knowing I had all this other crazy coming up the following week, I decided I’d rather know nothing and hope for the best.

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“I said to my soul, be still and wait without hope, for hope would be hope for the wrong thing.” ― T.S. Eliot

 

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OK. I lied. I did peek just once. She was snapping so many images! But I only saw the screen for maybe twenty seconds and to my relief, everything looked normal.

Sunday was all mine. Julian went galavanting with some high school friends, in from Houston and Minnesota. I decided to stay home alone with Frank and just vedge. The only downside was the damn wind we’ve been getting knocked around with here in Las Vegas lately. Any day now it can stop. My allergies are killing me on top of everything else.

Monday kicked off this week with Thyrogen Shot 1 –  It stung like a motherf*cker! Tuesday, exactly 24 hours later, ( in my best DJ Khaled voice ) ANOTHA ONE. I’m still wrapping my head around why exactly I paid 2K to get probed with needles. Oh wait, that’s right. Because the alternative is to go off your thyroid meds for three weeks and feel like a pile of brain dead mush that sleeps all the time. That doesn’t fly in the creative entrepreneur club.

Directly after my first injection Monday, I headed downstairs to get my blood drawn for a pregnancy test. No, I am not pregnant, nor are we interested at this point. It was strictly precautionary due to the fact that later today, I’ll be swallowing more radio active iodine in preparation for my i-131 full body scan Friday.

BUT GET THIS. Summerlin Hospital LabCorp lost my blood! And so this morning, when I was suppose to pop that radioactive pill, I got a phone call from Desert Radiology’s Nuclear department. My heart dropped thinking they were about to tell me we had a Lil’ Murr on the way, but low and behold, they called to inform me they could not find my results. Le sigh. Is this really happening? So at 7:30AM today, I raced to another LabCorp to give additional blood for a STAT pregnancy test. Go figure, the first lady poked me TWICE and didn’t get a vein. F*ck. I hate needles already and she was just digging into my arm! After her double fail, a second mam came in to draw. She apologized, she was going to have to go in the same vein that was already bruised from Monday’s lost labs.  She got it like a pro, but I was about five seconds from passing out. She yelled for ice and laid me down on the table directly ahead of where I was sitting. What an early morning trip! I promise you I will NOT be paying for this second bill if and when it comes. The worst part of it all? I have to get more labs tomorrow to check my thyroid levels. AHHHHH. I’m going to keep telling myself, the Universe is throwing this all at me to test my ability to stay positive and calm, with results tossing me into my first NED ( no evidence of disease ) category in three years. Pretty, PRETTY, please.

And now I’m writing this while I sit patiently, trying to concentrate on work, and await Keith to call me over to swallow some foreign pill. See, the thing is with these tests, they have to be done in a specific order. Mostly due to the Thyrogen injections. It’s a stressful and daunting runaround. All results should be available by May 3. My appointment with my endo is May 8. I can pick everything up before then, but do I want to? I don’t like my endo enough to wait for her to tell me the verdict. What would you do?

Alright. Time to sign off. Thanks for reading! More from me Friday. We’re halfway there!

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ThyCa, Thyroid Cancer, Thyroids, Uncategorized

For the Sake of Updates

So, I realized I haven’t checked in since surgery… SURPRISE! I made it. I’m alive and well and feeling really good about the outcome of this procedure. Blood work on the 25th will confirm if I am on the right track. January 26th will determine if I decide to do another round of RAI treatment. I’m beyond anxious.

Pathology reports confirmed that the far left lateral node was THE only cancerous node. The other couple surrounding nodes that were removed, around that nasty left fella, came back clear. Fuck yes. The upper sternum node came back clear as well, gracing me with another little scar, but I already love it.

At this point, I think it’s safe to say I’m back, better than ever. Already going hard in the paint. The recovery surrounding this last surgery was quite brutal, but we all stayed super positive and here I am! Good design will continue to pour out of my little corner this planet and Frank still has someone to dominate his brut, seventeen pound self.

Other Random Things Happening: The new season of Shameless started Sunday night! Target is having a killer sale on their athletic apparel for women. I’m not talking their usual red light special of 13% – It’s finally something worth while – 40% OFF. BINGO. Yesterday was the last day filming for our first TV debut. Bittersweet. I don’t know how reality stars do it. It’s exhausting, oh so fake, and I’ve realized I was never meant to win an Oscar. Julian won’t let me adopt a beautiful eight year old cat named Little Guy from PetSmart; even though it was his idea that planted the seed in my head. We’ve lost a very important woman in our lives this past week – my Great Aunt Tetsuko. So much for 2016 giving me a little emotional breathing room. I’m currently reading, Big Magic – Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert. Spring is shaping up to be one hell of a travel storm: San Diego, Tijuana, Guadalajara, Cheyenne, Jacksonville, Daytona Beach, Orlando, Milwaukee, Weyauwega, Minneapolis, Palm Springs -Catch me if you can! Business is booming, which is exciting and overwhelming – all at the same time, in all the right ways.
And that’s what’s been happening in roughly the first 288 hours of the new year.

Looking forward to the remaining 8448.

More soon, Lovers!
“Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step. – Lao Tzu
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